15OCT2021 – OCF Update – This ‘N’ That

It’s funny.  It seems like even the Left is starting to admit that Biden has made a shambles of the country and maybe some of them are starting to sound kind of scared.  Still too early to say if it will effect the outcome of the congressional votes on the gazillion dollar reconciliation bill.  I assumed that all the skullduggery planned was a done deal.  Maybe I’m wrong.  We’ll have to see.

But we will be going through some extended bad times as I mentioned in my last post.  I’m starting to look at my own finances to see what cutbacks I should make.

I was listening to the ZMan’s Friday podcast.  It was on organizing and near the end he was talking about negativity.  And that clicked for me.  What we do has to be building things and living.  Just fighting our enemies isn’t enough.  It’s too long a battle to just hold your breath till the end.  We need to make our thing about living and enjoying our lives.

I’ve been writing this story about a sniper who is taking revenge against the FBI.  I have to admit it’s a lot of fun writing about revenge.  But I want the story to be embedded in a larger frame about building something bigger than revenge.  I want to have it about building a community that’s hidden within the current United States.  So this fictional story corresponds to how I think about the world I’m living in.  And that is helpful when thinking about real life.  The things I write about are larger than life.  We can talk about underground bases and new technologies and secret organizations but even the little things we do on-line can be positive and enrich our lives.  We talk to people and we share ideas and maybe we help each other solve some problems.  And if nothing else we act as sounding boards for people who don’t have one.

So today I am doing some story plotting and re-writing.  It wasn’t strong enough or tight enough.  I punched it up and cut it down and I like it a lot better.  It’s another beautiful day and I intend to go out and take some photos of the fall.  A couple of days ago one of the dogs found a big old Northern Water Snake sunning itself near one of the gardens.  I got some good shots of it and I will probably put it up later as a post.

Fridays are usually pretty quiet on the site.  I’ll put up a post later.  Maybe I’ll review another season three trek episode.  I’m getting impatient with them but considering Shatner’s recent trek into almost-space I guess I should do my part.

Camera Girl is an inveterate crime drama reader.  She reads about fictional crime fighters like Jack Reacher and Harry Bosch and Jesse Stone.  Well, we recently started watching a tv series about Harry Bosch and I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how well it’s made.  Not everything is to my taste but it’s a quality series.  So at some point I’ll be reviewing it too but I must keep my nose to the Star Trek grindstone.  Duty is duty.

I’ve been listening to Larry Correia’s podcasts on fiction writing, “The Writer’s Dojo.”  and even though not all of the information is specific to what I do I find the experience of listening to these two writers talking about their mindset when they’re writing to be energizing.  For instance, they were talking about villains recently and it occurred to me I was wasting an opportunity by not beefing up the character of one of my villains.  After all good villains are sometimes even better than the hero.  Look at the Joker in Batman.

And this weekend we’ll have some grandkids coming around and that’s always fun.

So bear with me.  I’ll have some good stuff soon.

Richest Man In Illinois Says Chicago Resembles Afghanistan

Ken Griffin is a hedge fund manager and he is thinking of getting his company out of Chicago.

“Billionaire Ken Griffin, founder and CEO of the hedge fund Citadel, hinted Monday that he might move his company’s headquarters from Chicago, saying the crime makes the city more akin to a war-torn country.

“It’s becoming ever more difficult to have this as our global headquarters, a city which has so much violence,” Griffin said. “I mean Chicago is like Afghanistan, on a good day, and that’s a problem.”

Griffin said he personally saw “25 bullet shots in the glass window of the retail space” in the building he lives in, adding that someone “tried to carjack the security detail” that sits outside his house.”

My favorite quotes,

“It just tells you like how deep crime runs in this city,” Griffin said. “There is nowhere, where you can feel safe today walking home at 9:30 at night and you worry about your kids coming to and from school.”  “That’s no way for our city to exist,” Griffin said.

The perception of crime has started making it difficult to recruit talent to Citadel’s Chicago campus, he said, and he can’t in good faith tell people the city is a good place to raise a family anymore.

Griffin didn’t say where he might consider moving his global headquarters to, but he was asked if New York City could serve as an “antidote to the dysfunction” of Chicago.  “You guys need some new medicine, too, because some of the same problems that we have faced is now unfolding in New York,” Griffin said. “The path New York is on is a scary path.”

It’s about time that these cloud people got their heads wrapped around what they’ve signed on for.  What did they think would happen when they bent the knee to BLM and allowed the police to be vilified?  Maybe if it were their children being terrified at school and their businesses being burned out they might not be so matter of fact about unleashing antifa on us.  Too bad a few of those bullets didn’t come a little closer to his face.

04OCT2021 – OCF Update – Monday Stuff

A place for everything and everything in its place.  Camera Girl and Princess Sack of Potatoes are active and underfoot today.  They have chores for me.  They don’t know how busy and important I am!  But all is well.

I have revised my exercise routine.  With new found respect for the ability of the Concept II rower to erode the lower back I have taken a more careful and measured method to my madness and have seen great results.  Twenty minutes and 140 calories of effort has actually shown surprising results with only a slightly tightened back.

I await to see what new politico-socio-mayhem awaits us this week.  Perhaps Biden and Fauci will require us to be bled with leeches to show our true allegiance to war against COVID.  Whatever.

One of the many things that has been effected by the global supply chain disruption is digital cameras.  Because the sensors are basically a big piece of silicon the chip makers are a crucial link in the process of launching a new camera.  And so far they have stood in my way of finding an update for my Sony A7 III camera.  The A7 IV is about a year behind schedule and now the October launch is already being scrapped.  The only hope being offered is that at least the authoritative announcement of the new camera’s features will occur in October.  Well, patience is avirtue.

I used to be an avid fan of the 1970s pop group Jethro Tull.  Back then he had a style that combined rock with what might pass for pseudo-Elizabethan folk music.  Anyway, for whatever reason I dug this song out of my memory and attach it here.  For whatever reason the song came up out of the depths of my memory so I’ll pass it along.

 

Biden Vs. DeSantis

I watched Biden’s old man’s rant against people who don’t want to be vaccinated.  Then I watched Ron DeSantis’s rebuttal.  My first comment is Ron DeSantis comes off as a leader and Joe Biden comes off as a demented liar.  And by the way, Joe would be a liar even if he hadn’t already slipped into late-stage senility.  He’s always favored bold lies.  But whoever is writing his speeches seems completely unconcerned with either truth or even the appearance of credibility.

Joe has stripped away the mask and is now dictating unconstitutional controls over the lives of all Americans.  He is dictating the medicines we take and forcing us to walk around with our mouth and nose covered regardless of how that will affect us physically and emotionally.  He has become the embodiment of Orwell’s dark vision of the future “1984.”

Ron DeSantis talks like a representative of the people of his state and he has carefully staked out a position that addresses the actual problems and allows him to offer all the citizens of his state choices that they can decide between.  First off, he was ahead of the curve getting safeguards in place to protect the large elderly population in Florida from a virus that was primarily a threat to their age group.  And he worked hard to make vaccines available to all the people who wanted them.  But he also made a point to protect the people who didn’t want the vaccines and didn’t want their lives disrupted.  He hasn’t force people to wear masks.  He hasn’t closed down restaurants and theaters and stadiums.  In fact, he’s gone the extra mile and made sure there were laws in place to protect Floridians from corporations and local governments who would lock down these businesses and enforce a mask mandate.

And he’s earned the ire of the media because of it.  During the Delta Variant spike, the news companies have been keeping up a drumbeat counting deaths and taking the side of teachers’ unions and school boards who want to force small children to wear masks to placate the teachers who in some cases aren’t even willing to be vaccinated themselves.  This is a guy who is planning a strategy to show his citizens that there is an alternative to shutting down a country and hiding under your bed.  He’s showing that Fauci and Cuomo and now Biden are lazy idiots who don’t have the sense to try and adapt to a bad situation in a way that doesn’t punish people for trying to live their lives.  He’s smart and he’s got some courage.  What I see is a man who is auditioning for one of the top two spots in the next administration.

It’s no surprise that Joe Biden sounds like a liar and an incompetent trying to shift blame to anybody but himself.  I wouldn’t be surprised if he resigns relatively soon.  But his replacement is almost as bad.  She’s an unlikable shrew with absolutely no ability to speak to reporters and not much in the way of brains.  So, if Joe quits it’s a case of “out of the frying pan and into the fire” for the Democrats.  Three years of Harris should be enough to throw the election to Trump even if the fraud machines are running at full speed.

What I’m interested in is what kind of cabinet DeSantis could provide to either himself or Donald Trump.  Trump had almost no one working for him who was both competent and loyal.   Mike Pompeo and Mike Flynn were probably the only exceptions I can think of.  If DeSantis has built up a core of good men who can run the departments of the federal government, then we might see some real progress in draining the swamp in Washington.  I don’t mean to get too far ahead of myself but it is tempting to imagine that experienced government administrators would have a much better chance of hitting the ground running than just random Republican hacks borrowed from the think tanks and the former George W. Bush administration.

Maybe Ron DeSantis has the right stuff.  It will be interesting to see how he copes with what Dementia Joe and the Swamp will throw at him starting today.  I wish him every success.  Because his success would be our good fortune.

14JUL2021 – OCF Update Mid-July Report

This will be an outrage free day.  Even though Bastille Day is not my idea of a holiday worth celebrating today is a joyous occasion in my house.  I will therefore accentuate the positive.

I think I will initiate a series of posts devoted to various facets of Western Civilization.  I’ll range over history, culture, ethnography and geography.  I’m tempted to start from ancient historical and geographical facts about the region and then move forward through time introducing the various actors as  they appear on the scene.  Now do I start with the Neanderthals?  Finding out they were red-heads means the Irish may want to claim then for their own.

I will include information on the Yamnaya who appear to have been the mythical proto-Indo-European tribe that expanded East and West and spawned the languages that now dominate half the planet.  Not bad for a bunch of bronze age horsemen from the steppes.  I’d like to touch on especially some of the lesser known nations of Europe, the Georgians, the Lithuanians, the Letts, the Finns and others.  this will serve the dual purpose of allowing me to produce interesting and upbeat content and at the same time satisfy my curiosity about things I’ve always wanted to know.

But just to show I’m not an Indo-European chauvinist, (well actually I am), I’ll include information on the Basques.  These seem to be the descendants of the oldest inhabitants of Europe from a time before the Indo-European ancestors came on the scene.  Or at least before their languages began to dominate.  And I won’t neglect our neighbors to the east.  The river valley civilizations of the Near East were the source of agriculture that was the basis for organized human life on the planet.  So I’ll throw the Sumerians in just to show I’m a sport.  Do I have to include the Egyptians?  I guess I might.  Without them we wouldn’t have had those mummy movies.  Well, we’ll see.

And I mean to trudge on through the third season of Star Trek.  I’ve been dragging my feet because it is a terrible season.  But I’ve promised myself I’ll finish it.  As I’ve mentioned I intend to review Jackie Gleason’s classic 39 episodes of “The Honeymooners” series.  But I probably need to at least start into the Star Trek work to allow myself the reward of watching something fun like the Honeymooners.

The endless rain here in New England continues.  I’ve adapted to the annoying reality of it but I do hope that the second half of July returns to the normal hot dry summer I prefer.  Well, we’ll see.

So this may be a slow day.  I’ll write what the mood provides and enjoy a dinner out for once.  I’m bringing Camera Girl to our favorite Chinese restaurant and we’ll embrace the Orient for a change.

Festivus For the Rest of Us

The geniuses in Washington have made “Juneteenth” a federal holiday.  First of all, Juneteenth?  That’s a word?  Couldn’t that also stand for June 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, or 18th?  Can I call July 11th Juleventh?  And how would I know it doesn’t mean July 7th?  And do we all get to pick a federal holiday now?

Frank Costanza made a strong case for Festivus (December 23).  What with the feats of strength and airing of grievances it seems like a natural for the age we live in.  And personally, I favor Colour Blindness Awareness Day (September 6) but could see people having their own favorites.

But Juneteenth?  Isn’t that what Martin Luther King’s Birthday is for?  How will the Puerto Ricans feel about this?  And where will this leave the Tierra del Fuegians and the Patagonians?  And what about the Eskimos?

 

Well, anyway here is my list of holidays from which to replace Juneteenth (special consideration to names in bold type):

February 27                                                        National Pancake Day (USA)

February (first Saturday)                               Ice Cream for Breakfast Day

March 1                                                                National Pig Day (USA)

March 10 or Friday of first full week        Middle Name Pride Day

March 20                                                             World Sparrow Day

March (First Saturday)                                   National Corndog Day

April 1                                                                   Edible Book Festival

April 11                                                                 International Louie Louie Day

1st Saturday in May                                        World Naked Gardening Day

May 4                                                                    Star Wars Day

May 25                                                                 Towel Day

May 26                                                                 National Paper Airplane Day

June (First Friday)                                            National Donut Day

June 2                                                                   International Whores’ Day

June 24                                                                 Take Your Dog to Work Day

July 2                                                                     World UFO Day

July 26                                                                   Esperanto Day

September 6                                                      Colour Blindness Awareness Day              (my personal favorite)

September 19                                                    International Talk Like a Pirate Day

September 22                                                    Hobbit Day

September 28                                                    Ask a Stupid Question Day

October 4                                                            Cinnamon roll day

October 11                                                          World Obesity Day

October 16                                                          National Boss Day (Boss’s Day)

October 18                                                          World Vasectomy Day

October 21                                                          International Day of the Nacho

November 19                                                     World Toilet Day

November (First Friday in November)     Love Your Lawyer Day

December 14                                                     Monkey Day

December 23                                                     Festivus               (for the rest of us)

Abstract Macro

So you might be saying to yourself, “Boy, that’s a weird looking one.  What was he thinking putting that up?”

I’ll make a story out of it.  Why not?  It was a sort of an oddball day.

As I’ve noted, we’re in the silly season and I couldn’t bear to read about Joe Burden telling us about how he rassled with Vlad the Impaler and forced him to raise the price of oil to a thousand dollars a barrel to save the world from green house gasification.

So I spent today outside digging some weeds and planting some seeds and playing around with the camera.  In fact I spent so much time that I lost track and actually filled up the 64 Gbyte memory card I had in the camera.  Now it wasn’t empty when I started, far from it, but I got so wrapped up taking photos of bugs and flowers and mosses and mushrooms that I definitely took way too many shots.  And that’s why someday I will have to do a massive purge of bad and mediocre images.  I have something like a million files and I could easily get rid of 75% of them if I had the heart to face that task.

Believe it or not I have images many times worse than the ones I put up on the photo of the day!  So I had to stop and empty out the files onto the desktop.  But then I got distracted.  I started looking through the images and I started liking some of them.  And then I got playing around with them.  I’d crop them mercilessly to see some tiny corner or center that had some geometric or pattern thing going on.  And before I knew it the day had disappeared.  But it was fun.  So I figured I’d share the reverse order of what I was doing today.

 

 

 

 

So as you can see even weeding has its moments.

 

 

12JUN2021 – OCF Update

As you may have noted, my daily photo is now solidly past photos of summer 2020 and into the fall with autumn foliage colors and leaves all withered and sear.

Juxtaposed against the very verdant summer outside my window I find it stimulating to enjoy the contrast.  And it reminds me not to waste the chance of getting out in the world and soaking up the summer air and sun.  It’s turned cool and rainy today and we’ll have a bit of cool weather for a few days but with any luck global warming will come to my rescue.

After the elation I described in conquering the lawn mower repair I bragged that I was looking for new worlds to conquer with my newly minted mechanical aptitude.  Well, pride goeth before the fall and Camera Girl reminded me that I had promised to fix a leaky drain line on the kitchen sink.  I was going to call a plumber.  The line is one of those new-fangled plastic lines that have invaded our piping systems of late.  And I’ll bet dollars to donuts it will require all kinds of fittings and adhesives that I do not possess.  Well, what can you do.  My pride won’t let me call the professional now.  Well, not until the water gets too deep.

Tyler Cook of the Portly Politico and I have decided to cross link on our reviews for the 2019 movie based on H.P. Lovecraft’s story “The Colour Out of Space.”  We both thought this movie was awful but we thought that readers should enjoy the nuanced differences between the reviews.  Actually what you’ll see is our two styles.  Tyler is a witty and intelligent writer and I like to rant.  This exciting literary event will occur at 6:30 AM Monday, June 14th 2021.

On the politics side we are firmly into the Silly Season lull but there are stories emerging that indicate that the “Great Reset” is a partnership between Woke Capital and the Joe Burden administration.  Apparently Black Rock Capital will buy up all the suburban real estate so our kids and grandkids will have to rent from them in perpetuity.  On a positive note DeSantis in Florida, Abbott in Texas and some of the other governors are starting to make noise about taking a stand against the feds and the woke corporations and fight for our rights as unwilling serfs.  Abbott doesn’t seem like a real conservative but maybe he’s smart enough to know which way the wind is blowing.  DeSantis may be the real deal.  Time will tell.  Maybe we actually aren’t licked yet.

Anyway, plenty of fun stuff to write about.  Stay tuned.

Who We Are (And Who Isn’t Part of Us) – Part 1

Recently (well about a week and a half ago) I was talking to an old friend and he was talking about how all these leftists were on our side.  Glenn Greenwald and Matt Taibbi and various homosexuals and lesbians were all up in arms about being cancelled and didn’t I think it was great that we were getting all this support from former enemies.

And I said no, these weren’t friends or even allies.  These were people just slightly to the right of Trotsky who were upset because they hadn’t gotten the orders from Left Central about how they were supposed to go along with virtually anything the Left said while Donald Trump was still in office.

Sure, I thought it was admirable that Greenwald and Taibbi had shown journalistic integrity in refusing to say that two plus two equals five but it’s not as if they believe anything else that I believe in.  They believe that America is a racist, intolerant country full of ignorant rubes who need to be reprogrammed.  They just don’t want the cancel culture to reprogram them too.

So, this got me thinking.  How do we define us?  Or rather how do I define us?  Because I’m sure that everyone on the Right has a slightly different definition of what he thinks the Right is.  This is actually a pretty important idea.  In the past conservatives have ended up in the wilderness or have followed a fake conservative based on whether they were more or less particular about who was inside their tent.

There are different ways to approach this sort of thing.  A politician would look at it from a strategic point of view because he is trying to maximize his voter base.  Of course, that is how you end up with gay marriage and Bruce Jenner in a sundress.  From my point of view, I guess I’ll look at two criteria.  The first is who wants things that I can’t tolerate.  The second is who won’t tolerate things that I want.

Let’s look at the first criterion.  What are the policies that will keep you out of my coalition of the annoyed?  There are some pretty big balloons floating around in this one.  Anyone who wants gay marriage is out.  Anyone who wants to legalize pedophilia is out.  Anyone who favors slavery reparations is out.  Anyone who wants to make illegal aliens citizens is out.  Anyone who favors affirmative action is out.  Anyone who wants gays in the military is out.  Anyone who wants to drop the physical requirements for the military is out.  Anyone who wants women in combat units is out.  Anyone who believes there are more than two sexes is out.  Anyone who thinks children should be allowed to be sexually mutilated because they’ve been brainwashed into thinking they belong to a different sex is out.  Anyone who thinks BLM and Antifa shouldn’t be rounded up and imprisoned for life is out.  Anyone who thinks George Floyd was an innocent victim is out.

Hey that’s a pretty good list.  Now let’s look at the second criterion.

Anyone who says that hate speech is a crime is out.  Anyone who says the second amendment doesn’t mean Americans can own and carry guns is out.  Anyone who says that I don’t have the right of free association is out.  Any one who says the government can close down my business and force me to wear a mask indefinitely is out.  Anyone who says that America is a terrible place with a terrible history is out.  Anyone who says that white people are evil because of their race is out.  Anyone who says that anyone is morally better or worse without reference to that person’s actual actions is out.  Anyone who enforces speech codes like forcing me to use “preferred pronouns” is out.  Anyone who wants to teach that any of the things included here are good things is also out.

And that’s a pretty good start on that side too.

I called this Part 1 because it’s meant to be a talking paper.  I’m interested in what other people think of my list.  Would they add or subtract anything for their own list?  That discussion would be a good subject for Part 2.  So look over my list and comment.  What have I left out that’s on your list?  What would you remove?  Have your say.